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Old 06-08-2005, 11:13 PM   #83
Dojo: Finger Lakes Aikido
Location: Cortland, NY
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 977
Re: Aikido minus mysticism: a step forward

[quote=Monty Collier]
Michael Gallagher wrote:

A rose by any other name is still the same.
We can keep all the techniques of Aikido, but call it something else.
You might lose more than the name.

So what.
So this: Respect. It is a very big deal in many Asian cultures. My Kali instructor -- who, BTW, is a red-blooded American -- takes it very seriously. If you don't, that's your perogative.

This is the United States of America. I don't have to have permission from any punk to teach Judo, Jiu-jitsu, or Pentjak Silat. If I learn something, and I want to teach it, then have at it. This is the beauty of a free market. The U.S. Constitution is all the permission I need. I say this, because I know all to well about how some of these oriental socialists think. You don't need permission to teach martial arts. Thank God the Gracies didn't listen to those stupid oriental traditions when they decided to break from the traditional nonsense to establish a more practical system.
In the first place, Guro Andy's Serak instructor, Maha Guru Victor de Thouars, is not an "asian socialist." He is a Dutch Indonesian who has lived in this country since the 1950s (I think). He served in the US Marine Corps, and is probably more patriotic than some people who were born here. He certainly doesn't have anything nice to say about people who would burn the flag.

But he is also a traditional Indonesian master. Why do you need permission from him to teach Serak? Because it isn't just something he picked up somewheres -- it's a sacred family heirloom. That's why he's working so hard to promote it, to insure it doesn't die off. When you're in with him, it's the best. But when you're out, you're out, and not showing proper hormat or respect is a good way to get booted out. And people have been.

Before putting your other foot in your mouth, please reread the paragraph before the last one. Thank you.

You can use part of your class time to explain how Japanese people eat, sleep, and worship, and if your students are dumb enough to not object, then who cares.But if a person comes to you and pays you to learn how to defend himself, and you show him how to eat with chop-sticks, then I would say that you are in breach of contract.
The martial art itself is a part of the culture. You are preserving it whether you like it or not.

I don't need to know Japanese culture to be able to hip toss a guy.
The Greeks were hip-tossing people long before the Japanese had Judo (see the Illiad circa 9th century b.c.).
You might to be a good martial artist.

If your math teacher decides that you should add 5+5 to get 12, will you keep practicing this, and teaching it to others? What if it is wrong to add 5 and 5 to get 12? Should we dare go against our teacher and add 5 and 5 to get 10? Will teacher get mad at us for doing math correctly, rather than the way he wants us to?
If O-sensei was wrong, then he should be corrected.
It would be stupid to take his word for it just because he was taught by this guy, and that guy, or because he is the founder of this system, ot that system.
If after doing martial arts for however long you've been doing them, you don't have the vaguest understanding of giving people the respect they're due, then I won't bother. But maybe you should do something else with your disposable income.
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